Stuffed Peppers 2 Ways
This is no culinary feat. This is a comfort food thing.
I used to be a purist and blanch the peppers in boiling water for a few minutes to soften them up, but I find that baking them does the trick, so I now skip that extra step. Makes life much easier.
My favorite way to stuff peppers is Neapolitan style (recipe here), with toasted breadcrumbs, capers, raisins and herbs. But my husband loves his peppers stuffed with a sausage and rice mixture. Request granted.
I decided to stuff them both ways, one for vegetarians and the other for the carnivores.
Here is how it goes:
I hollow out my red peppers, cut the ribs (white parts) out and the seeds. They cook faster if you cut them in half, in sort of a cradle shape. You can also leave them whole if you like.
The stuffing mixture can be anything you like. The pepper is just a vessel to hold the stuffing. I make a stuffing of basmati rice and sausage.
I cook the broken up sausage in a separate pan along with chopped sun dried tomatoes (gives it a nice flavor), garlic, 1 chopped onion, fennel seeds and some fresh parsley and basil. Then I cook up my rice in another pan (as per package instructions).
When the rice is done, I incorporate it into the sausage mixture to make the stuffing.
Season w/ salt and pepper and any other seasonings or herbs you like. There is no science to this, believe me.
With a tablespoon, pack the stuffing mixture into each pepper half (cradle). Top with lots of grated fresh parmigiano reggiano cheese.
Bake in a baking pan for about 45 minutes at 350 degrees.
A great Sunday dinner. Happy Sunday!